‘A real club effort’ – Footballers team up to boost NHS
PUBLISHED: 17:27 23 April 2020 | UPDATED: 17:50 23 April 2020
Kindhearted players at a community football club have praised the amazing work of the NHS amid the continuing coronavirus crisis.
Players and committee members at Kirkley and Pakefield FC have rallied round in supporting their efforts to donate £3,100 to the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston.
A bulk of the money had been raised to support NHS staff after players based at the Lowestoft-based club had been fined during the course of the 2019-20 season.
K&P’s first team players had been fined £1,700 throughout the season for a range of misdemeanours.
And after the club’s reserve team and U23 players added their fines money to the pot, further donations from committee members led to a grand sum of £3,100 being handed over to the hospital this week.
The money would usually have been spent on an end of season party or trip away for the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division players.
Instead, first team captain Jack Herbert said the players were keen to “show a bit of gratitude” as they hailed the NHS heroes.
He said: “It is a phenomenal amount, and it is our way of thanking them all for what they are doing in these unprecedented times.
“We know people who work at the hospital, and we always have a good end of season kitty – so having had a chat with the players and manager Gary McGee we said we would like to donate the money to the James Paget.
“This has been a real club effort.”
He said the fines pot this year had been boosted by the club’s fantastic FA Vase run, which included long away journeys, but stressed that the total was “not because they’re bad lads,” but instead that they were “very honest”.
For example, players who had left K&P and had returned to the club – such as Bodie Carter, Kyle Baker and Ian Dawson – were automatically fined £50.
Vice chairman Colin Smith said the club was “proud to donate £3,100 to our marvellous NHS” to help towards funding.
He said: “K&P, under the initiative of first team club captain Jack Herbert, thought of ways to support the local NHS.
“With players on board from the first team, Reserves and Under 23s, together with the adult committee, this week the grand sum of £3,100 was raised which has been donated to the James Paget Hospital/NHS.”
The Walmer Road club is continuing to support the NHS and has also been collecting bed linen and pillowcases to be used in the making of scrub bags, hats and face masks for the hospital.
If anyone has any materials, items, or wish to make donations for the hospital, all would be welcomed by the club.